The Cardigans: Long Gone Before Midnight
The fact that the Cardigans had one hit in the States back when I was in college, so let’s say 1996, and then did not appear again on the pop radar Stateside probly has to do with the fact that that one hit was the only tune sweet enough for an artistically brainwashed American public (addicted to junkfood) from a band making authentic rock music. Well, at least on this record they are. :)
My reindroduction to the Cardigans came through, again, the pop channels…quite literally, one of the music video channels we get and I am lothe to occasion with my attention: either one of the 4 German, 1 French, 2 Italian, or 1 Polish stations. I thought to myself, Hey, who are these people, despite the kind-of goth-disco thing going on with this video, I really like this song–strong hook and some interesting chord changes in the verses. Come to find out it was the Cardigans’ new single, You’re the Storm.
So I was in London, and Adam just happened to have a copy of the new record, and, sorry Cardigans I ripped you off. But I figure there’s a format change in our near future and I’ll have to buy it then in some new format the world can’t live without. Besides this way I can stock up on your back catalog.
So the first thing about the album are the hooks. The hooks do their job. You keep listening. You get hooked.
Then the production starts to get noticed. Please please please can I have that drum sound?
Of course the voice. The voice that seduces you in about 3 seconds…
Then the lyrics. It may be that they are around the same age as me, maybe have had some of the same experiences, are coming from the same worldview. Dunno. But there are good ones in there; I’ll share just a few.
For twenty seven years I’ve been trying To believe and confide in Different people I found…
Some of them got closer than others, And some wouldn’t even bother, And then you came around.
I didn’t really know what to call you, You didn’t know me at all, But I was happy to explain.
I never really knew how I’d move you, So I tried to intrude through The little holes in your veins.
And I saw you. But that’s not an invitation, That’s all I get, If this is communication, I disconnect… I’ve seen you, I know you, But I don’t know how to connect, So I disconnect…
You always seem to know where to find me, And I’m still here behind you, In the corner of your eye.
I never really learnt how to love you, But I know that I love you, Through the hole in the sky
I’m an angel bored liked hell and you’re a devil meaning well You steal my lines and you strike me down Come raise your flag upon me And if you want me I’m your country If you win me I’m forever
‘Cos you’re the storm that I believed in and all this peace has been deceiving I like the sweet life and the silence But it’s the storm that I believe in
Come and conquer and drop your bombs cross my borders and kill the calm Bear your fangs and burn my wings I hear bullets singing…
–from the aformentioned single Storm…that very last line is absolutely the lyric I wished I’d written
Baby, let’s stop and sleep for a spell! We could turn this ditch into a well And send that old devil back to hell,
Your back’s not straight like before, You really shouldn’t carry me no more, I’m much too heavy for you, I’m really quite a mess,
Yes, we just don’t care anymore, We’re crooked and we’re cut to the core, We’re just not there anymore, But we really don’t care, do we? No, we couldn’t care less… We couldn’t care less…
–from Couldn’t Care Less